Although most people realise that they need to drink enough and stay in the shade on very hot days, it is still worthwhile reminding them that hot weather can bring with it risks to health.
Joris Moonens of the Care and Health Agency told VRT News that "We have launched the warning phase today so that everyone has time to prepare for the warm weather from Sunday. It is the first temperature peak of the year and will bring with it a speedy rise in temperatures after a period of cooler weather. From experience we know that people are all the more vulnerable then”.
Although all of us should be on our guard some groups are especially vulnerable.
“In the first instance older people and children under the age of three. They notice less easily that they haven’t drunk enough. With this in mind we ask everyone to watch out for each other”.
Municipal authorities, care in the home services, care homes, GPs, child care services and youth movements that work with vulnerable groups are reminded to take measures to protect people from the heat. Generally speaking, mortality rates peak during periods of high temperatures, particularly among people that are already not in optimal health.
· When the weather is warm pop in and see or phone elderly friends, neighbours or family members regularly to check that they are ok. If you are visiting them in person take some fruit or vegetables with you so they can enjoy a light meal.
· Don’t wait until your child is thirsty before given them something to drink.
· Adapt what you eat to suit the warm weather conditions.
· Avoid strenuous physical exercise
· Open the windows as soon as it becomes cooler outside than it is inside.
· More to a cooler are of your house/flat if your home is not able to be cooled sufficiently.